Northern Australia Defence Summit

Hosted by the NT Government, this policy-driven event will look at the opportunities for Australia’s Defence industry in Northern Australia.
23-24 October 2019 | Darwin Convention Centre





2019 Agenda

Welcome Reception | Tuesday 22 October 2019

Enjoy the picturesque surroundings and gorgeous view of the Darwin horizon at Parliament House as the Chief Minister welcomes attendees to the 7th Annual ADM Northern Australia Defence Summit.

Hosted by: The Hon Michael Gunner MLA, Chief Minister, Northern Territory Government


17:30 – 19:30 | Main Hall, Parliament House

KEYNOTE ADDRESS | Chief Minister’s Welcome Address

The Hon Michael Gunner MLA, Chief Minister, Northern Territory Government


DAY 1 | 23 October 2019

9:00 OPENING | Opening remarks from the Chair

Katherine Ziesing, Managing Editor, Australian Defence Magazine


9:10 KEYNOTE | Ministerial Address

The Hon Michael Gunner MLA, Chief Minister, Northern Territory Government

9:40 Northern Australia as a launch point for pushing Australian and US military and political influence north

  • Making the NT more than just a great place to train
  • Considering how the NT and Darwin can support an ‘outwardlooking’ Defence strategy
  • Constructing a broader web of military-to-military alliances in the region

USMC Col (Ret’d) Grant Newsham, Japan Forum for Strategic Studies

10:10 Australia’s Involvement in the Equipping and Training of the Timor-Leste Defence Force

  • Australia’s involvement in Timor Leste
  • The regional stability and maritime security value of a strong Australia/Timor-Leste defence partnership
  • Ongoing cooperation and training exercises

Colonel Richard Watson, Defence Attache – Timor-Leste

10:40 Morning Tea

11:10 Deployment Capabilities of Australian Ground Forces in the Region

COL John Papalitsas, Commander Regional Force Surveillance Group, Australian Army

11:40 Defence Industry Export Opportunities

  • Highlighting the work that has been done over the past 18 months to build relationships
  • How is local Defence Industry performing in its attempt enter international markets
  • Growing Australia’s Defence Export ability

David Johnston, Australian Defence Export Advocate

12:40 Lunch

13:10 Developing the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter

Scott Thompson, Interim Chief Executive, Lockheed Martin Australia

13:40 Strategic partnerships across the Indo-Pacific to ensure domestic Australian security and protection of regional interests

  • Enhancing military collaboration with regional allies
  • Assessing current security threats to the region
  • Current and future roles of Major Powers in the region

David Glass, Assistant Secretary – Major Powers, Department of Defence

14:10 Current and future Defence Infrastructure projects in Northern Australia

  • Where Defence is currently investing?
  • Future program of work overview
  • Engaging with the Construction Industry

Colonel Leonard Rouwhorst, Director North – Capital Facilities & Infrastructure – Estate and Infrastructure Group (E&IG), Department of Defence

14:40 United States Force Posture Initiative (USFPI)

  • US military presence in the Northern Territory
  • Ongoing joint training exercises
  • Sharing expertise, research and equipment

Brigadier Mark Brewer, Director-General US Force Posture Initiative, Department of Defence

15:10 Afternoon Tea

15:40 PANEL | US Infrastructure Projects in the NT

Brigadier Mark Brewer, Director-General US Force Posture Initiative, Department of Defence
Sarah Brown, Director – USFPI Infrastructure, Department of Defence

16:30 Australia’s burgeoning space sector: The role of the North

  • NASA’s recently announced plans to partner with Equatorial Launch Australia’s Northern Australia launch sites
  • Developing the space industry in the NT
  • Short & long term focal points for ELA

Scott Wallis, Founder & Chief of Space, Equatorial Launch Australia

17:00 CLOSING | Closing remarks from the Chair


18:00 | AIDN Gala Dinner – Darwin Convention Centre

The Australian Industry Defence Network (AIDN) will be holding their annual Gala Dinner and Defence Industry Awards that will coincide with this year’s Northern Australia Defence Summit. The event is separate to the conference and requires additional registration. Dine and network with your colleagues in a relaxed setting and enjoy the fine territory hospitality.

DAY 2 | 24 October 2019

Northern Australia Defence

8:50 OPENING | Opening remarks from the Chair


9:00 Insight into advanced manufacturing across different sectors and it’s benefit to Defence Industry

Dr Rebecca Murray, Director – Advanced Manufacturing Alliance, Charles Darwin University (CDU)

9:30 PANEL | Advanced Manufacturing outcomes from CDU work with US Marines and Patrol Vessels in the NT

Dr Rebecca Murray, Director – Advanced Manufacturing Alliance, Charles Darwin University
Captain Christopher Eggleton, Director Patrol Boat System Program Office, Royal Australian Navy
Captain Alex Hawes, Captain Patrol Boats, Royal Australian Navy

10:15 Building the NT’s Defence Infrastructure

Allan Schmidt, Sector Leader Defence, Sitzler

10:45 Morning Tea

11:15 Darwin Maritime and Aviation Academies

Developing Industrial Sustainment Capability & Workforce Skills Capacity In Northern Australia

Stephen Goodall, Industry Engagement Officer, Industry Skills Advisory Council NT

11:45 Engaging and Employing the Local Community in Defence Projects

  • Building an Indigenous workforce
  • Opportunities large defence projects bring to regional communities
  • The involvement of Indigenous populations in Defence

Naomi Anstess, Chief Operating Officer, Intract

12:15 End of Conference

Indo-Pacific Defence

8:50 OPENING | Opening remarks from the Chair

9:00 Relationships and Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific

  • Australia’s strategic position in the region
  • Indo-Pacific relations
  • Possible flashpoints

9:30 PANEL | AI, big data and technological advances: What does this mean when considering the defence of the North and security of the region?

10:15 Working Collaboratively Across the Indo-Pacific

  • Building civil-military relationships across the region
  • How international cooperation and collaboration can build a stable Indo-Pacific

10:45 Morning Tea

11:15 AI and Defence technology; can the region keep pace with China, and what does Beijing’s supremacy in this domain mean for Defence procurement and strategy?

Paul Burton, Managing Director, Aviation Week Network

11:45 Protecting Australia’s Northern Border

  • Cooperation between the agencies responsible for border security
  • How are transnational organised criminal groups attempting to exploit opportunities at Australia’s borders
  • Information and resource sharing with regional allies

John Coyne, Head of Border Security, ASPI

12:15 End of Conference